Remembering Ray Mantilla

A tribute to the versatile percussionist

Percussionist Ray Mantilla passed away on March 21, 2020 at the age of 85.

Raymond Mantilla was born in New York City on June 22, 1934.

His childhood friends included percussionist Ray Barretto, pianist Eddie Palmieri, percussionist Manny Oquendo, and flutist Johnny Pacheco.

Mantilla began playing congas and Latin percussion as a youth and was busy working at sessions and making recordings while still quite young.

He gained recognition as a member of Herbie Mann’s Afro-Cuban band during 1959-63, and then became very busy in the jazz and Latin music worlds.

Mantilla appeared on hundreds of recordings in his career including with Ray Barretto, Charles Mingus, Art Blakey, Gato Barbieri, Joe Beck, Walter Bishop Jr, Mose Allison, Kenny Burrell, Richie Cole, Larry Coryell, Joe Farrell, John Hicks, Jack McDuff, Jimmy McGriff, Jeremy Steig, and Cedar Walton.

Mantilla was also a member of Max Roach’s all-percussion group M’Boom where he had the opportunity to display his versatility on a variety of percussion instruments, and he visited Cuba in 1977 as part of Dizzy Gillespie’s historic visit.

A bandleader since 1978, heading a group called the Space Station, he led nine albums and became notable for performing Afro-Cuban jazz in unusual time signatures.

Here is Ray Mantilla leading Space Station in 2012.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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Remembering Ronald Lewis

A tribute to the preserver of New Orleans’ African-American cultural traditions

Ronald Lewis passed away on March 20, 2020 at the age of 68.

Lewis was a participant in New Orleans’ Mardi Gras parades from an early age and loved the culture so much that he became an authority on New Orleans’ parading customs.

When he retired after working for 31 years for the Regional Transit Authority as a streetcar track repairman, he devoted himself fulltime to parade culture.

Lewis’ collection of Mardi Gras costumes, supplies and memorabilia along with his photos (he was a skilled photographer) so overwhelmed his family’s residence that his wife persuaded him to move his collection elsewhere.

In the early 2000s, Ronald Lewis opened his cultural museum, The House of Dance and Feathers, in the Lower Ninth Ward of New Orleans with the original purpose of teaching children about New Orleans’ culture.

Hurricane Katrina caused major damage but he was able to rebuild the museum which became an important cultural landmark; he also wrote a book about his collection and the legacy that it represented.

This film, which was made at the House of Dance and Feathers, features Ronald Lewis talking about New Orleans culture and his collection.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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More rumba

There is a simple solution to all life’s problems: More rumba

Roman Diaz, Pedrito Martinez, Mauricio Herrera, Clemente, and Sebastian Nickoll en la casa de
Román.

Was this filmed in Havana Norte (New York City) or Havana proper?

It turns out not to matter!

But if you’re looking for clues, that nifty basketball hoop for kids is unlikely to be in Cuba. If only we could read the labels on those beer bottles, we’d know for sure.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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Adonis Panter Caleron & Adonis Jr.

Another wonderful video from the atticchris YouTube channel.

Adonis Panter Caleron taking his son Adonis Jr. through the paces.

The title is:

Tocando y Enseñando – La Herencia
Un Momento Familiar

Playing and learning – The Heritage
A family moment.

The world can go to hell in a hand basket, but as long as this continues, all will be right with the world.

God bless the musicians and musical families who fill the world with light.

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
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Go to Cuba with Jazz on the Tube as your guide:
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The secret of the Buena Vista Social Club

he ORIGINAL plan for what became the Buena Vista Social Club was a summit between musicians from Cuba and Mali.

The financing for Mali musicians was derailed sat the last minute so they couldn’t make the gig.

Finally, years later, the summit took place and here’s a taste.

Eliades Ochoa, Cuban singer/guitarist
Bassekou Kouyate (ngoni)
Djelimady Tounkara (electric guitar)
Toumani Diabaté (kora),
Kasse Mady Diabaté (vocals)
Lassana Diabaté (balafon)

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

P.S. Our unique programming is made possible by help from people like you. Learn how you can contribute to our efforts here: Support Jazz on the Tube
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Osaín del Monte – On stage and at home

A polished stage show by Osaín del Monte

Ensayo (rehearsal)

– Ken McCarthy
Jazz on the Tube

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